Valerian root is a tall perennial herb with pink flowers that grows wild in North America, Europe and Asia. It was first used as a sleep aid, but now has also been found to be very helpful to ease anxiety and relax tense muscles.
Studies are now being done to show it is also beneficial in relieving digestive conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulosis. For women, valerian root is being used to relieve menstrual cramps. Although evidence is light, some people use it in their bath water because of its calming effect.
Valerian Root Benefits
Valerian is becoming increasingly popular as a sleep aid becausd it is not addictive and there is no morning
grogginess. In a placebo-controlled trial of 27 people with insomnia, 89% of those who were given valerian root reported improved sleep, with 44% saying their sleep was perfect. Overall sleep quality was improved, with people falling asleep faster and staying asleep longer.
Another benefit of valerian is its use to lessen anxiety and restlessness. It seems to inhibit nerve impulses and stress-related feelings from reaching the brain.
Valerian antispasmodic properties are valuable in countering the spasms of muscle tissue in the digestive tract and easing the pain that accompanies this. This promotes healing since many digestive disorders are caused by stress.
Valerian Root Side Effects
When taken at recommended doses there seems to be no side effects to valerian root. With this being said, however, some people that have taken in during the day have experienced a certain lack of alertness or drowsiness.
Always take the recommended dose. Large doses may cause dizziness, restlessness, blurry vision, nausea, and grogginess upon awakening.
Wait at least 3 hours before driving when taking valerian in case of tiredness. Avoid alcohol while taking valerian. Do not take it if your are pregnant or breast-feeding.
Consult your physician before taking this or any supplement.
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